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HS2 chief executive to give first press conference

Sir David Higgins believes construction of HS2 should be speeded up Credit: PA Wire

The new chief executive of HS2, Sir David Higgins, will today give his first press conference to present his thoughts about the high speed rail.

He believes the construction of HS2 should be speeded up in order to provide benefits sooner to the north of England.

Phase One of the project will link Birmingham with London from 2025.

Phase Two will run from Birmingham to Manchester and through the East Midlands into the north of England. It is expected to be completed in 2032/3.

Protests are expected to take place outside the conference against its construction.

Grandmother graduates 70 years after passing degree

90-year-old Gene Hetherington with her granddaughter Rachael as she collects her degree from Manchester University. Credit: PA Wire

A 90 year-old Sutton Coldfield grandmother has finally graduated 70 years after gaining her degree.

Gene Hetherington earned a BA in Commerce in August 1943 but could not attend the ceremony at the University of Manchester due to her involvement in the war.

Following her studies she immediately went to work as an auditor in aircraft factories.

She finally graduated on the same day as her granddaughter, Rachel, 23, picked up her law degree in the same ceremony.

Mrs Hetherington described the ceremony at the university's historic Whitworth Hall as "wonderful", saying she was especially pleased to pick up the award alongside her granddaughter.

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Justice for Julian support group aid Webster family

The Justice for Julian support group, together with Julian Webster's family, are writing to The Home Secretary Theresa May calling for a Judicial Review.

Mr Webster, 24, from Birmingham, had returned to the pub in question after a night out to retrieve his mobile phone.

The police were called and when they turned up asked the door staff to release him. When they did, he was dead.

The Crown Prosecution Service decided it was not in the public interest to prosecute the door staff.

Family of man who died while being restrained by door staff call for judicial review

Julian Webster had returned to the club to collect his mobile phone. Credit: ITV News Central

The family of a man from Birmingham, who died on a night out in Manchester, are writing to the Home Secretary, Theresa May, to call for a judicial review into his death.

Julian Webster, who was 24, collapsed after being restrained by door staff outside a pub in 2009.

The case never reached court.

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Brewer used 'powerful position' to groom pupil

Sentencing Michael Brewer, Judge Martin Rudland, sitting at Manchester Crown Court, said he had used his "powerful position" to groom Frances Andrade.

Choirmaster Michael Brewer has been sentenced to six years in prison for sexual assault. Credit: Press Association

"You have had an impressive career but that is now at an end," he said.

"Sadly there is another side to you and it is this. You were, and you may still be, a predatory sex offender. Of that let no-one be in any doubt."

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Choirmaster jailed for six years for pupil abuse

A choirmaster who sexually abused a pupil who went on to take her own life during his trial has been jailed for six years.

Michael Brewer arrives at Manchester Crown Court for an earlier hearing. Credit: Press Assocation

Michael Brewer, 68, of Swarthmore Road, Selly Oak, Birmingham, was convicted last month of indecently assaulting 48-year-old Frances Andrade when she was an underage student at the prestigious Chetham's School of Music in Manchester.

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Patient in Manchester 'travelled to Middle East'

Health protection workers have established that the patient being treated for novel coronavirus at a Manchester hospital had recently travelled to the Middle East and Pakistan, the Health Protection Agency (HPA) said.

Professor John Watson of the HPA said last week, "Our assessment is that the risk associated with novel coronavirus to the general UK population remains extremely low and the risk to travellers to the Arabian Peninsula and surrounding countries remains very low".

"People who develop severe respiratory symptoms, such as shortness of breath, within ten days of returning from these countries should seek medical advice and mention which countries they have visited", he added.

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Man accused of teenager's murder appears in court

The man accused of murdering gap-year student Keiran Crump Raiswell has appeared in court.

Imran Akhtar Hussain is 26 and from Berkshire. Hussain is a student himself, who had been studying in Coventry.

Keiran was found with stab wounds on Upper Chorlton Road in Whalley Range last week. He was taken to hospital but died from his injuries.

Hussain has been remanded into custody, and will appear again at Manchester Crown Court tomorrow morning.

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